Bose release new wave music system

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Bose has just released another oh-so desirable black box, called the Bose WAVE music system, which functions as a combined CD player and radio. The system uses two 2.5 inch speakers, and will allow for higher sound quality by employing a “unique dual tapered waveguide structure that features two 26-inch waveguides with a common output.”

Among the more easily understandable features is an auto dimming fluorescent display, a Bose link interface that allows the system to link with other Bose products, and a talk radio mode, to enhance the sound of your favourite talk show programs. The device also supports MP3 cds and comes with a cool remote the size of a credit card. As you might expect from Bose, it ain’t cheap, going for a RRP of £449.

Chris Cornwell

8 comments

  • Bose is just another product. i like classic hifi some old valves are great and there are so many old hifi speakers out there like kef, celestian, wharfedale ‘E’ range try the rogers 101 now the F1 team know a thing or two these were £400 a pair get 2nd user for a song ££ look radicle too. please remember most bands live have used crude PA systems and yet most chase the hifi dream. just get what your ears like and suits your location of use. but what helped me go off boses boasts of quality & hifi (at a price)was the fact that if you buy their say 802s you will be presented with the importance of buying expensive quality cables to feed them. well simply remove a driver in the 901 800 or 802 etc and you will see a birds nest of thin coat hanger type wire just spun wrapped not even a quality solder joint & it snaps real easy and some 240 watts is supposed to reliably run though this? down 8 x 1ohms speakers daisy chain wired would you believe just like the unreliable XMAS lights. basically bose is just one of many speaker co out there, and over driving treble down a basic driver is not that clever, try turning the treble up at high volumes it pushes your amp to over load and the top end is limited more like 13khz if your volume is on say 8 the treble gain introduced is defo more than 13 (with the controller) and the top 4 drivers on your 802s have a cheap capacitor shorting the treble across the lower 4 and dumping it all to the top 4. Its just a simple trick. but still no tweeter as used by all other pro companies. So why is it soooo over priced and with their BIG marketing and sales teams, achieved such snob value.
    I have spoken to many audio engineers who seem to always over complicate audio and with bose they come out with so many bizare explainations with what the controller does to the 802 drivers you know every speaker does different phases at varying frequencies independently with the volume equalized depending on the direction of the wind well i have a pair of 802s and they sound great i used a 10 band graphic use a pink noise to setup for speakers and room correction at the same time and i also have the correct settings for the 10 equivalent for the controller just in case but no one yet can tell the difference and considering i bought a set of cheaper replacement drivers of supermilleniumguy on ebay al less than £15 each speaker now ive simply rewired reliably with a dual circuit copper wire & quality soldered joints. I know i will get decades of good service at a bargain price so all i can say is thanks bose for designing these 802 cabs they now are ideal compact and plenty loud enough
    Ta fred

  • I recently received the WAVE music system as a gift back in January.

    So far – their so called highlight ‘preserves the natural reproduction of instruments and recreate the experiences of live performances’ do somewhat deserve the extremely controversial pricetag – only depends on what you listen to most of the time. I live in Australia – bought it from Indonesia and mine costs AUS$999 at BOSE Australia website – MUCH MORE expensive than the US Pricing :)).

    I’ve been listening to it almost every day and to be short and brief – I don’t consider this for bass hoo-has. What I mean is that the balance between the bassy curve and the rest of the freq range has been separated and almost up to the sense that each instrument in a song is individually analysed to produce the most neutral response. But depending on the genres you play, I would rate the system’s bass performance is more suited towards authenticity rather than entertainment.

    Also, it’s impossible for me to come up with rating out of ten. Everyone’s different and hence – this review is only based on my personal experience and perception. Room & psychoacoustics principles may vary the results.

    I emailed BOSE USA (BOSE Australia didn’t even replied) for me to get the frequency response range. Unfortunately, I wasnt sure but they gave me the tuning frequency instead – it’s 60 hz to 15 khz.

    *Although I’m technically not an audiophile I do remaster my entire music collection for three years so far. But to make this review understandable to everyone – I will only use the performances of different genres of music to articulate*

    Having played a variety of musical genres on the WAVE – it leaves me with the impression that it should only be targeted to those who are looking for vocal & mid to high frequency realism. However at reasonably high volumes – this system can easily fill up a big room (15×40 foot) with little effort.

    One genre that disappoints me the most on this system (personally) is from casual to heavy Rock songs (though I mainly listen to Japanese and contemporary mixes). The Music System does not give me enough kick in the bass freqs. Instead – the WAVE Music System almost completely ignores the extra bass reproduction & its’ after-effects. Nonetheless anyone can very easily pick up the bright (sometimes very) details on the cymbals and electric guitars.

    POP wise – some styles may work and some may not depending on the bass material for each song (direction, intensity, and so on). The results can hugely vary (since many adopt similar sounding principles with techno, hip, jazz, etc) but generally – I am satisfied most of the time. The WAVE Music System does sounds exceptionally good at times as long as I play them at reasonably high volumes.

    Salsa/Latin/Dance & clubbing types/techno remixes – Although the system gives a flat & neutral response it is still at times fail to deliver sufficient bass response. I experienced same symptoms as if listening to rock – which is that (sometimes) very prominent high freqs reproduction to the point where things can sound a little shrill.

    Drum N’ Bass however – can sound quite good provided if they are safe enough to be played on high volumes (eg. – LTJ Bukem & Makoto series sounds strong and full enough to entertain, but not overly bass-shake a room unfortunately).

    Vocals, gospels, Jazz, contemporary mixes, lounge and chill out sessions: Now this is the REAL treat. The BOSE WAVE Music System no doubt treats these genres best (if not, the best as many have described around the web) when played from low to reasonably high volumes. Lounge/Instrumental Jazz – for example – left me immediately in the mood as each instrument is boosted significantly with depth and clarity. Even after one day you had a bad experience on it with rock songs – try playing several lounge jazz on it; the WAVE sounds as if it’s a completely different system. I listen to Ministry Of Sound’s Chill Out Sessions 7 from time to time and the compromise between the three frequencies left me with little concern.

    Under jazz – vocals will still stay ever more forward than the rest of the instruments. Eg. The Beautiful South’s ‘Les Yeux Oeverts’ (‘French Kiss’ OST Main Theme) prioritise the vocals a little too far – making it more difficult for me to hear the rest of the instruments at low volume.

    -CONNECTIVITY–(3.5mm Stereo AUX input)

    The WAVE System works great on PCs (I have an Audigy for added fidelity – bass,treble and EQing) and DVD players. But again, this unit is all about clarity and neutrality – perhaps so many DVDs will play reasonably flat but exceptionally detailed on the humble sized WAVE Music System.

    I do strongly suggest that everyone should experiment which external player sources (be it MD, LD, DVD, PC or even portable CD players with built in bass boost/separate parametric EQs). Especially PCs with so many different potentials with media players, processors such as SRS WOW, and EQ tweaks.

    —-

    In short, depending on the genres and unless if you remaster/re-sweeten your songs – The WAVE Music System could be your most often-played, and if not – the only personal player you will own for (of course!) a very, very long time.

    …I recently heard that it took BOSE corporation as many as 250 engineers from almost every tech & music industry to make the system. At the end of the day, I am still amazed by the eclectic performance made by something so small.

  • The first guy is correct, Bose do have very good ‘real life’ acoustic measurements, and their products are designed to sound good to the ear. For some this works, others it doesn’t. Bose does spend a lot on marketing, but more so on developing new technologies – some of the patents they own are actualy more complex than you think – the wavegude is not simple, you cannot just stick any tube onto any speaker -it must be measured to perform optimum.

    About cheap PCB boards, they are not made anywhere else other than either the USA or China. The Bose factory over there is very good, belive me… I’ve seen it. The guys there are smart too.

    Bose knows instruments very well, most of their employee’s are musicians. Don’t belive me? Look up the ‘Bose band’. The problem seems to be with how they sound, not the quality. Bose speakers produce a natural acoustical concert hall response, based on top concert halls, and thats where Stereo everywhere and direct/reflecting came from… not everyones likes the sound these tech. produce, but others do. It’s not about bad sound quality, the bose are exceptionaly clear, produce clean notes and are robust in design, very few fail – what is different is the response is not flat, it’s a natual curve based on the hearing. I hear just enough treble and bass and balanced mids from a Bose system, yet others hear no treble and think the bass is weak. Everyones different, go listen yourself.

    The acoustic waveguide is resonant over a wider band of freq. than a bass reflex, bass reflext boost cirtain notes creating a boomy sound. The Bose can be boomy sometimes, especially on dance music, but World, Classicial music sounds excellent. Comes down to your tastes in music as well. The wave is not one of the best value products, I’d personaly suggest the Companion speakers instead – but as an all in one portable device that delivers loud, powerful, clear sound from a box so small – it’s rather impressive and I aint seen a single fail. Heck even the 901s if you contact bose, they will replace the cones free, just ask them nicely, and just to note, Bose drivers are not subject to rotting anymore.

  • I just started working for the company. I can attest to one thing. QUALITY! Each radio is tested using sound proof booths with precision monitoring equipment that go far beyond normal cheap radios. We test them one at a time! All acoustics must be perfect and are gauged using lengthy tests. The hands on aspect is still there with an elegant mix of robotics and human intervention. To watch the process is like watching an artist paint. You DO get what you pay for! Something that your ears will enjoy.

  • Got no highs, got no lows, must be Bose.

    Ask a Bose salesperson why they can’t show you standard audio characteristic measurements. I’m talking about basic stuff here, frequency response, impedence (Bose insists you use their audio equipment with their speakers), sensitivity, power output, power handling.

    They’ll insist that it’s because Bose’s technology surpasses tired old standard measurements that everyone else is using. Ask to see a frequency response chart.

    I know $$ = Kitsch in this culture of ours, but educate yourself just a little and you can do way better for the money…

  • BOSE just puzzles me. Besides they always had a nice sound quality (not superb but well ok), and beside moving doors and bending remote commanders, this is just a heap of plastics…

    Inside, Taiwan-style quality (pcb boards), poorly assembled.

    BUT what I never understood: How in the end this stuff sounds acceptable *g* Sooo in the end, you have something that looks uncommon and sounds well – hope it doesnt need repair too soon;)

    “Acoustic wavequide” -> is what every bassreflex box has as an essential acoustic feature… so.. prettxy ridiculous PR stuff here 🙂

  • It’s a terrible shame that Bose haven’t included DAB reception in the new Wave. Given the investment in the technology and the huge choice of stations i would have hoped for DAB. The Wave is an excellent piece of kit, but £450 without the fastest growing reception system in the UK is dissappointing…

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